6 Ways Satan Will Try To Tempt You
Here are six clever ways that Satan or his demons will try to tempt you.
Depriving One Another
If a spouse is feeling shunned by their partner and they use the withholding of sex as a weapon during a disagreement, then they are depriving the other partner. The Bible says “Do not deprive one another, except perhaps by agreement for a limited time, that you may devote yourselves to prayer; but then come together again, so that Satan may not tempt you because of your lack of self-control” (1st Cor 7:5). This leaves a crack in the door for Satan because it is harder to have self-control when your spouse is depriving you of sexual intimacy. The back side of this is that the partner that feels slighted might think its okay if they flirt with someone else since they’re not being satisfied by their spouse. That is a huge mistake and any adultery cannot be fully pinned on the partner who’s withholding the sex even though it surely increased the likelihood of temptation and adultery. This might be one of the greatest of sins yet one of the most subtle ones. David started his sin when he saw Bathsheba taking a bath and instead of instantly turning away, he allowed the lust in his heart to lead to adultery and later to the murder of Bathsheba’s husband, Uriah. It starts so innocently; with a quick glance. It seems that in a fraction of a second, lust in the heart can take over and then “desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death” (James 1:15).
Sometimes we see other Christians doing things that Christians ought not to do and that makes us think it must be okay for us. What’s the harm in having a few drinks on a weeknight? What’s the harm, right…until the DUI comes and your world can come crashing down around you. We are not supposed to use others to judge ourselves and should not “dare to classify or compare ourselves with some of those who are commending themselves. But when they measure themselves by one another and compare themselves with one another, they are without understanding” (2nd Cor 10:12). Our standard is Christ-likeness. Satan or his demons might want us to think “Hey, what you’re doing is not as bad as what so and so is doing.” We tend to rationalize sin like Eve and Adam did in desiring the knowledge of good and evil. It is far too easy to try and rationalize the Word of God like that serpent of old, “Did God actually say?” (Gen 3:1).
Guess what’s right in the center of pride? “I” am in the middle of pride and so is about everyone else who’s ever been born. For most of my life it was all about “me” and my life was centered on me as the “I am.” The Great I AM, the one, true God had to humble me before He could ever extend His grace (James 4:6). The universe didn’t revolve around me but around God and His glory and most glorious Son of God. Pride is what Satan tempted Eve with so that she desired the knowledge of good and evil and then that temptation gave birth to sin, which is how James describes the process when “each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death” (James 1:14-15). Satan’s pride caused his fall from heaven, it caused my fall, and it causes many to fall. The good news is the fall puts you in a position where you can only look up!
Your weakest Link
We are only as strong as our weakest link and Satan or his demons can see your most vulnerable areas in your life where you’re more likely to sin. He’s already accusing you before God for the last time you and I sinned (Rev 12:10). For me, I do not go near parties where alcohol is served, mind you I don’t go to many parties anyway, but for me it could be a stumbling block and I don’t want to place myself in a position to fall. That being my weakest link also makes it my greatest threat of allowing the enemy an entry. Then I can be led away by my own lusts in the temptation and it might bring forth sin. For some, that weak link might be pornography, drug abuse, shopping, work, family, Internet, or just about anything else you might imagine. You and I are in a spiritual battle and the enemy is looking for that weakness your armor of God.
Looking is Okay
This one might be more of a problem for men than women, at least statistically. Looking at others is one thing but looking and lusting after others is not some innocent, we’re-only-human sin. There are no mulligans when it comes to sexual immorality. God will forgive but that doesn’t mean the consequences will remain. Jesus said “that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart” (Matt 5:28). Knowing his own heart, Job said “I have made a covenant with my eyes; how then could I gaze at a virgin” (Job 31:1) which means he determined ahead of time not to even look. He must have realized that he could have committed sexually immorality, even in his mind, so he refused to entertain any lustful images in his mind.
Give it Up
Satan would love nothing more than to try and discourage you and then have you walk away from the faith. Then you’d lose your testimony and feel like you’re the last person on earth who’d ever share the gospel with anyone. The enemy or his demons might be constantly bombarding your mind with the idea that you are not a real Christian. It might even be a Scripture that convicts you like Jesus saying “You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect” (Matt 5:48). Satan knows we’re not perfect nor could ever be this side of heaven but thankfully, His righteousness was imputed on all those who repented and trusted in Christ (2nd Cor 5:21). The enemy can gain a victory if he can stifle just one person’s witness so he will certainly tempt you and me to give up on the Christian life.
I hope this has helped you become more aware of Satan’s tactics. He is a schemer (2nd Cor 2:11) but God is sovereign over the lives of all who have repented and trusted in Christ but they still need to take up the full armor of God (Eph 6). You and I are fighting an invisible enemy and we’re going to need some help.
Article by Pastor Jack Wellman